one of which in washington is almost been totally discredited because they really haven't included a broad swath of the opposition, broad enough that would have legitimacy with the opposition back in syria itself. but there are some attempts and people are thinking about these things-perhaps because of what happened in iraq in 2003. >> wonderful. one more. yes, please. >> what this likelihood that the regime will use chemical weapons and what should we or could we do if they do? >> good question. that's one of the questions that no one has an answer, understand what circumstances would the regime use chemical weapons. i suspect they don't want to use them because that would galvanize the exact international response they're trying to avoid. the don't want this type of mass blood-letting that will compel the international community to intervene much more assertively
than it has. so i don't think they're going to use chemical weapons. the fear is, though, if the regime -- if the opposition gains the upper hand, if the regime is on its last legs will they want to go down in flames or will they want to launch a chemical attack against israel, for instance, desperately trying to turn a domestic conflict into an arab israeli war that will take the pressure off them for a little bit, coe aless the people around israel and soing for. that's the dooms day scenario. >> wonderful, thank you so much for being here. [applause] >> this event took place at the 17th annual book festival in austin, texas. for more information, visit
i was working for general nick nicholson doing really cool things, supporting my country. maybe i should write a book. really? compared to ben wagner? really? compared to jacob salvi as an f-18 pilot. mehgan barley. so the stories in this book were exceptional and i knew that my role as class president 2002 i could connect the dots and bring the personalities together to weave together a book that could define this decade through leadership lands. so i called carol anderson. carol anderson lost her son richard in a helicopter accident
training. i called her on the phone as i did all of the mothers who wrote in the book who lost their sons and i said carol, my name is lieutenant joshua welle at the time and i'd like to talk to you about richard. are you selling t-shirts? [laughter] no maam i am in the naval academy on the board of trustees and i have an important project i'd like to talk to about. this is not about sweatshirts. i don't want to talk to the naval academy. she was actually torn at the time. she was suffering about her son's loss and she hadn't been reached out to buy the academy family and we could do better. i said man we are writing a book to honor richard. our classmate, over 100 will submit and 33 will make the cut and we would like to hear your voice. do it for richard, do it for those he served. two weeks ago after we sought out our first printing with naval institute press i received an e-mail from her. i name is carol anderson and i receive my copy of in the shadow of greatness leg yesterday
afternoon and just finished reading it. i spent much of the night and couldn't put it down. in the knowledge midsection, talked about those in the class of 2002 who advocated the project. i was a skeptic. i was a skeptic. i wasn't sure how the book would turn out. i wrote the book more for myself than for richard because i needed to heal. i also wondered, how good it would actually be berger recently berger recently when the emil came out about the release date and asked me to spread the word i did as my duty. a new -- e-mailed all the venue and told him about the book and they said although it was called a must-read by tom brokaw, i had not read it myself and could not endorse it. i had no idea what was to come. i do now and look forward to reading the other stories ,-com,-com ma the courage not just a battle that the next step, the perseverance, the tramps and the failures that made you stronger.
she and i work for two years on her story. it is gripping and it will make you emotional when you think about how a mother answered the door when they find out they have lost their sons. when i called rocky to right, a navy football player, linebacker type. he wasn't sure how he was going to find his voice either but since we were classmates and company mates i said rocky, you were a casualty evacuation pilot and you saved over 150 marines, soldiers, iraqis and three deployments. you honor jen harris, another academy graduate. you honored ronnie winchester when you make the story. let's find your voice. we wrote this book to give a podium to people who are too humble to speak about service, who do their job day in and day out nobly and don't have a bestseller and don't go out into "the new york times" and write
their stories. they are too proud and too prideful. so i cajoled rocky as i had this vision of leading the stories together. i knew what i wanted. what i wanted battlefield bullets, feeling the pressure of combat and they're in this book that i also wanted to have universal attributes of partnership and diplomacy that we saw from 9/11 and till now in 2012. here's something from rockies story. i experienced several close calls while flying during my first appointment in iraq. we receive multiple rpg attacks, small arms fire but when we were flying our final approach on departure with a mass casualty call for combat house call -- oh ramadi. the first rpg was shot in front of us and our final approach tended 15 feet above the rotors. another was fired from behind us on departure and pass pass through the left-sided aircraft. rpg's are small arm friar shots
of aircraft numerous times on several occasions that the aircraft to damage. i distinctly remember evacuating a navy s.e.a.l. on my second deployment in 2006. the very same zone in ramadi, he was the first killed in action in iraq. one of the fellow seals came with him on the flight and when he picked them up he had a severe gunshot wound to the head and face but was alive during the transit. he succumbed to his injuries after we dropped them off and he became quite clear early on that no one was invincible here, not even a s.e.a.l.. i'm very proud of rocky story and the other 32 stories in this book. there there are 16 fields who graduated from the naval academy class of 2002. we provide officers into a diverse skill set in the marine corps. how many fields do you think wrote for her book? zero. one was my roommate, deserved and field team won and then went on to civilian work. he was my best friend and i knew he could talk the other
s.e.a.l.s. he could find these great stories and people would run to the store and buy the book. not one of the 16 day. after three years of saying they could write anonymously, saying he could write as a synonym and saying i would write for them if they did not have the pros, there is too much integrity for the silence. so as we climbed the ranks, purging no easy day, a book that maybe doesn't follow the rules or embrace what we are embracing, we hope you buy your book too. to my. we hope you realize that ours was no easy decade ,-com,-com ma story of leadership and lessons from a diverse group of missionaries and things that you can take from the war zone to the boardroom. i want to talk to you about our title, "in the shadow of greatness." i want to talk to you about the great people who endorsed this book. as you know, david gergen is on the cover. he is a leader of the harvard
kennedy school of governmengovernmen t and we are pleased as a former naval officer that he would support our book and gosh his 1000 word board would knock your socks off. we had general allen, the senior leader of our joint mission in afghanistan, admiral lochner ,-com,-com ma the senior naval officer for all the pacific regions in asia. we also have admiral mullen, the former chairman of the joint chiefs whose son is a classmate, john and his other son who graduated from the naval academy and three and is leading sailors today. he wrote this connection to the cause, this nonprofit book, this humble book that is good for the country. and then mr. brokaw. for nine months i e-mailed his assist and i tried really hard and i would push and push but i don't quit. and in the final weeks, he submitted his blurb in the book. i have some bad news. there's more security around tom
brokaw then admiral mullen. [laughter] so are we the next greatest generation? as the lead author of this project i would say we are prepared for greatness. we served in unique ways. we bled and lost class late -- classmates and subordinates and seniors on the battlefield and you see this in the book. it changes the way you want to serve at home. how do the world war ii generation do it? they said the ultimate sector fice, they came home and read engine of progress for this nation or the latter part of the century. week, the 2.5 million veterans who were coming home in the years to come are prepared for good things, for great things, to lead our country in uniform and out and you will see for those great stories in the latter part of our book. and in closing, the greatest generation in the 20th century lives through the great depression and fought a two-front war. our generation faced a faceless
enemy and return to to a country and economic turmoil. we aspire to be the next greatest generation showing humility and respect for those he came before us. if we are to emerge in the shadow of our grandparents we must persist with virtue and leadership. on every battlefield and in every boardroom, from baghdad to washington and from kabul to the valley. our commitment is resolute, are the nations best days lie ahead. thank you. [applause] [applause] i mentioned before i was a class president in 2002 so i helped plan tailgaters and i'd do some fiscal duties and we do interesting things. we write books, but in august of 2009 i got a phonecall from a
classmate that one of my classmates was killed. his mother is here with us today and she wrote for the story. one of those authors that i worked with overtime and we are honored to have you maam, and this event is a tribute to matt and we are grateful for your work and thank you. [applause] >> 9/11, 2001, four days earlier i was attending the naval academy's parents weekend for the class of 2002. this was mattheus chance to proudly show off his naval academy before graduating in the spring. for me the day began in matthews aerospace engineering class as my husband gary, the naval academy class of 76 was the guest speaker for the professors who had taught him 26 years earlier.
matthew beamed with pride as his father spoke. later that day, matt said mom ,-com,-com ma i want to show you something. we slipped away from all the activity and he took me to bancrofts hall, the dormitory. we walked through the great dorm and into that magnificent rotunda. he led me straight ahead and up the update worn marble stores to memorial hall, a ceremonial room used for special occasions. i smiled as i remembered three years earlier as he looked at me with a frightened glance, holding his hand up as his father swore him into the navy. that day the rumor sounded with other parents doing the same thing. that day, the day i was with matthew, the room was hushed as he led me into the hall past the sign asking for quiet and respect for no i looked around that room filled with plaques describing unimaginable courage,
it ancient flags flown in battle, paintings depicting hard-fought battles and class crests against the wall carved into the wall. he moved me to the back of the room and below a flag that said, don't give up the ship, with a large plaque and a lit up glass case. he looked at me and he said mom, these are the real heroes. these are the ones who died in combat for our safety, for our freedom, for our country. i looked at that case and i thought so many names from vietnam and the world wars and i thanked god that day that we were in these times. after showing me some of the other historical markers, matthew and i left the hall and join the family for a wonderful weekend for the families to see the accomplishments of their midshipmen. four days later, i stood in my eighth grade class and tearfully
watched the second airplane crash into the world trade center percolated a piece i was thankful for was over. our world had changed forever. matthew called me after the pentagon was hit. mom he said, i'm on duty and we were locking down bancrofts hall in getting our weapons. we may be a target. don't expect to hear from me for a while. this class of 2002 with transition immediately to a war and for the first time started on our soil. little did i know that my time with matthew at memorial hall was a foreshadowing of massey's future. today his name is listed with those he knew but under the new title, war on terror. matthew was chosen from marine aviation went through many trials and hardships before finally going into the first squadron in japan. there he became an gauge to the girl he loved and was on top of the world.
when extra troops failed to arrive in afghanistan that summer, the summer of 2009, matthew volunteered on the ground to help out. the absolutely found his niche with those marines. he took leave the first of july and secretly married theresa. july 10 was the last time i saw him. he arrived in afghanistan the end of july and wrote these final words in his journal on august 2. mom, dad, i can never repay you for all you have done for me. you made me into the man i am today. i hope that i have made you proud. that has always been my goal. i love you both so much. tell the girls i love them and couldn't be prouder older brother. i have always tried to be an honorable man and i truly believe in what we are doing here. i am doing this for my family so that they need not fear. my country so that can be a beacon of light for the entire world. the men around me because no one could ask for it better company
than the u.s. armed forces and finally, i do this for myself so that i might know the measure of myself and in and not be found wanting. i believe that it is my duty to fight and having done all that i can to simply stand against this and all the evil work that is upon this earth. he called me on the fifth and said, the people are so nice and the kids are so cute, mom. they would rather have pens and paper than food or water. can you get a fund-raiser started when school starts? two days later i was talking to my students on the first day of school about starting that fund when the marines walked down the hall to tell me that matthew had been killed. in a sniper attack while saving others. from the book, so blind written as if matthew were telling the story it reads, we went out at base camp toward an area where we knew there would be danger. recent intel had reported that
some 80 taliban would be in the vicinity. not more than 10 minutes into our patrol shots rang out. my team dismounted and cleared an enemy position in a mud house. i climbed the top to the top of the roof with kit behind me and killed a man holding an rpg during my ascent. i was visually acquiring way out of the area to call in air support when i was hit. everything went black. that day, my world went lax too. my daughters came home to care for their broken parents. my oldest return to washington state to offer tours of four and struggled to take care of their 4-month-old son. my youngest daughter left her beloved naval academy to take care of her grieving mother and father through months of brokenness, sacrificing her education. the people of richmond hill georgia and the surroundisurroundi ng areas welcomes matthew home with tears, flags and staff salute.
the streets were lined for 17 miles from the airport to the church. local choirs joined to sing it has memorial service at the methodist church that helped raise him. knowing matthew had been an eagle scout, a local boy scout troop honored him by collecting pens and papers and sending them to mattheus unit map these unit in afghanistan. a dear friend who was involved in the media had a fission and the project began. he dedicated much time and energy to produce a short film on memorial day 2010. since then with the help of so many volunteers, and i can't name them all, that project has sent over seven tons of school supplies to our soldiers and marines in humanitarian efforts in afghanistan. matthews small town of richmond hill and outlying city of savannah and their great army bases of ft. stewart and hunter army airfield and the savannah aircard have helped me heal by supporting the matthew freeman project and our annual veterans
day captain matthew freeman 5k run for piece. last night i dedicated a memorial in our town to captain matthew freeman project proudly announced a new scholarship that we will be starting for the siblings of the fallen in combat. these are the forgotten mourners who often sacrifice and postpone their education to comfort family or deal with their own grief. after 11 years at war very few people know about goldstar families. these are parents, siblings, thousands of children who survived the death of their loved one. as a mother of a fallen marine, i'm sure we are all ready for this war to end and bring our loved ones home. i encourage all to learn more about helping goldstar families. i humbly request a media report our military to humanitarian efforts in war-torn countries. our men and women are working for peace, not war.
this generation of grandchildren, the greatest generation may live in the shadow of the greatest generation but this great generation has carried on for 11 years straight with no track. there has been little media attention for their hard work and sacrifice. military lives husband's grandparents and friends have raised children working hard to keep the absent fathers and mothers who have kept the enemy away from our country alive to their children. these military families have sacrificed their joys of family life so that the rest of us can feel safe. my son-in-law is currently on the pace of deployment and my daughter in the special operations and my heroes. fear is part of their everyday. although my name is in writing this chapter in the book i cannot take all the credit. i was still so broken at the time i was asked to write in a difficult expressing myself. there is input for my husband, gary, matthews wife theresa who
was his high school sweetheart and worked with him on the student council and his naval academy friends. matthews story would not have been written without their input and i deeply thank them for all of their input. this book, "in the shadow of greatness" will help america to better understand the sacrificey and the courage of the brave men and women in the families of the greatest military force in the world. freedom is not free. god bless our military families in god bless america. [applause] [applause] [applause]
>> thank you ,-com,-com ma lisa. thank you mrs. freeman. war brings sorrow and weakness, but through the challengechallenge s we face over the past 10 years, we also got stronger. and seth lynn my classmate who is a proud marine, a scholar from princeton, has gone on to do things in our nation is going to share those words with you and i'm grateful for his mission in the book and his contribution to this effort. [applause] >> the thanks, josh. like just set -- josh said i'm seth lynn director at gw university and our mission is to train veterans, some of the folks who have contributed to this incredible book to continue
serving in public office. and it grew out of a nonprofit i started a few years ago called veterans campaign in my chapter in the book is about starting this campaign. we we we are now is a set housed at gw university ended like the first of all recognize my boss, mark kennedy who is the director of the school. [applause] marc spent six years in congress representing minnesota and his son is now a navy wing who is going to fly f-18s. he didn't go to the naval academy but he did go to notre dame. i am still smarting with the -- a couple of weeks ago but we will get over that. i want to thank josh for following with me constantly and making sure i submitted to this phenomenal book. josh came to one of our candidate trainings a couple of years ago after leaving the
navy. i'm going to take full credit for josh's presence. if you don't think josh will be president one day you haven't been paying attention so thank you josh. i'm going to start by reading the first two paragraphs of the chapter is submitted to "in the shadow of greatness." to exit camp i remember remember we have to zigzag around a serpentine, a set of cement barriers staggered to prevent someone from driving straight into the camp at high-speed. the names of famous battles were etched on the cement barriers so whenever my marines and i exited the camp we received a refresher in marine corps history. and a reminder of the legacy of those who have gone before us. we would sterry vehicles around the first barrier marks triple e. and barbary pirates and the next barrier central philippines fox rebellion. another one letter quarto canal at iwo jima, the next one marked tuscon incheon and chosin reservoir in the following
marked caisson, da nang and weighs city. the next-to-last one marked beirut, kuwait and somalia and the final barrier carried the names of some in of the marine corps's most recent battles, nasiriyah, baghdad and fallujah. as we exit the wire, suddenly the the battle name stops and we became part of history ourselves. now it's strange to think that just 11 years ago, last night, we all went to bed peacefully without any notions the following morning we were going to be thrown ready or not into what became the longest war in american history and it's hard now for me to imagine words like fallujah and nasiriyah and al-qaim without having some sort of emotional response. it's hard to remember what it was like to think about a date like september 11, without all the emotions it brings up. is also equally difficult to remember all my classmates and
we were all like before this great burden of four was placed on our shoulders forcing us to grow up faster than anyone imagined we would have to. our country's response to 9/11 really brought out the best in many of us and it was sort of a silver lining around a cloud of dust that was there in the weeks after the world trade center disappeared. i first realized this of all places while watching "the daily show" a week after 9/11, and if you remember he said this attack that happened is not a dream. the aftermath, the recovery is a dream realized and that is martin luther king's dream. whatever barriers we put up, even if that was just momentary, any fool can blow something up but to see these guys, these firefighters and policemen and people from all over the country literally with buckets rebuilding, that was extraordinary. that is why we have arty one.
now 11 years later, you can look at our nation and say well, it is as divided as it has been in recent memory and maybe we have to concede that some of that unity we experienced was as josh said just temporary and sometimes that makes it even more discouraging to watch the spectacle that our national political system has ultimately become. but, my chapter in "in the shadow of greatness" explains why i haven't lost hope. that's because i spent the years since 9/11 surrounded by a group of people who continue to live that dream. and to continue to set their differences aside and put themselves in harm's way and not failing to do at the country asked of him and these same people inspired me to start this nonprofit to help more people like them become elected officials. over the last decade, as we
watch politicians argue over who's who is responsible for causing our nations problems, our soldiers sailors airmen and marines daily have done what america is a vast of them even when it meant enormous personal sacrifice. for example my classmate gary ross kept himself in the closet and tell until "don't ask don't tell" was lifted just when he continued putting himself in harm's way and serving our country. we just heard about my classmate, matt freeman. i learned about matt's death on facebook which is obviously not the ideal ways to learn that one of your friends has been killed but it did allow me to go right to stage and see what people were saying about him at the time which was incredibly, incredibly cathartic. i remember looking at what he'd written before he was killed in the ops -- obviously put a post up that someone interpreted as disagreeing with president obama's policies and the start of one of these arguments you see on facebook all the time
enselman says you said this and i think this and you go back and forth and you say please just shut up. matt was incredibly inspiring. he said don't fight on my page. i disagree with some political decisions but he is my commander in chief and i support him and all military systems. to my knowledge that was the last post my friend matt wrote on facebook. in our last two national elections we watched our country registering complete dissatisfaction with the status quo, throwing them out and throwing them out again. if we are going to turn this state around we have to do more than just change the helmsman over and over again and expect a different result. we need more people like matt freeman and while i believe our country has the best political system in the world, the selection process is not always favoring candidates who are selfless, courageous are willing to set aside their differences to do what's best for the
country. and these wars we have been fighting in iraq and afghanistan despite the terrible burden they have imposed on us and our military for the last decade, we forged a generation of leaders who exemplified those exact virtues and polls consistently demonstrate that while americans americans -- not congress lessen any institution in the u.s., they hold are men and women in uniform in the highest confidence. for those of you, if you read the book about some of my classmates who begin to understand why. the book as josh said is titled, "in the shadow of greatness" and it's because my generation was lucky enough to learn from the example of the generations of veterans who went before us and if we are truly to live up to their example, our service to our country is going to have to continue after we returned home to the battlefield. with that i'm going to close out the final two paragraphs of my
chapter. i believe it's true that to whom much is given much is expected. as the iraq and afghanistan generation returns home and begins taking the nations brands of leadership i'm reminded of an accident at camp al-qaim. like the battle names on the stone barriers, we have the examples of patriots like george washington, teddy roosevelt, dwight eisenhower, john f. kennedy who became some of our country's most esteemed leaders after returning from war. we can look to senators ted stevens and daniel inouye who fought in world war ii together and despite representing opposite parties ninteen the lifelong friendship. we can look to john mccain, bob kerrey, chuck hagel, john kerry who despite facing enormous as challenges of war upon returning home, took the lead to normalize relationships in vietnam in helping to heal a wounded nation. it's now our responsibility to uphold the legacy of those who have gone before us.
as we in keeping with the mission of united states the united states naval academy assumed the highest responsibilities of command and citizenship in government. thank you very much. [applause] >> ladies and gentlemen we are going to make a quick transition in the front of the room to set up for the q&a. by showing a brief video. cue the video. [laughter] if you haven't noticed we have been having a little bit of technical difficulty here today. here we go. ladies and jones meant the video you're you are about to watch is a call to action. we encourage you to buy the book and join the cause. thank you very much. [applause]
>> he 9/11. we are prepared to serve in uniform but were not sure how ,-com,-com ma responding to responding to her nations call in harm's way in unique faces come in the air, on the ground, indices. >> it's the shared stories of the last 10 years of aboard when we were in uniform and the planes struck the towers. we knew that our -- and what we try to do is document the stories. >> more than 100 classmates wrote for this book. you'll be amazed at the diversity of stories. ann wagner serving in harm's way honors. >> that last female flying the f-14 over iraq and you know how it was to be a sniper on christmas day in iraq. this book is truly one-of-a-kind. not only do we have stories on
the battlefield with bullets by your head, you also going to read those touching stories from the mothers who have lost their sons. matthew freeman, andrew torres, they are truly gut-wrenching and touching at the same time. >> we wrote this book to connect to the american people who want to know more about how those serbs after 9/11. >> over the last two months we have received is just amazing, humbling feedback about the book. thousands of of people of britain and in asking how they can do did more. >> we started patriot league. it's a campaign that from now until saturday september 15, all the proceeds from our book go to eight amazing veteran organizations. they're the ones doing the heavy lifting. they help veterans transition from the uniform to civilian life. they support the families of the fallen. they paid the ultimate sacrifice who need our help today and in the years to come. >> if you're watching this video, you are already a patriot and we want to get the chance to do more. all you have to do is click on
the link before and buy a copy of "in the shadow of greatness." this book is 100% nonprofit. all proceeds go to military and veteran organizations. during pager week each of the organizations would have doubled their profits if you purchase up on. >> thanks for everything you do for our country. [applause] >> ladies and gentlemen thank you for being with us this evening. i would like for our panel to go ahead and have a seat and for those who have nodded been introduced yet i want to take a moment to introduce graham plaster one of the co-editors of the book and john ennis one of
the co-editors of the book. what we would like to do here is take your questions and answers. first i want to take one moment and i didn't clear this yet with josh. i'd like to take a moment to recognize chris stahl, our awesome editor who created these videos the ones you see him find so if you could help me give him a round of applause. [applause] there are so many people who stepped up in the last year essentially to make this project happen and we cannot thank them all that we are so happy you are here to join us. i will say one thing, they don't have volunteers as questions i will call people out who i know are here. [laughter] okay, one more thing. we obviously had eighth grade organizations that we partnered with for a patriots week. we would like those partners to stand in the recognize right now. if you are a patriot reporter,
you need to rise. [applause] thank you so much. you actually do the heavy lifting. we try to share the stories in the book and highlight the way these wonderful groups are carrying on in helping veterans but we just wrote the book. they actually do it every single day. now without further ado i was like to see some hands raised up. we should have microphones roaming actually. there we go. [laughter] >> i am russell came. at the question about question about the neighbor cat may. september 11 we were allegedly attacked for -- in the wars in islam is war for but i noticed as far as the naval expansion in the past 11 years, there has been a lot more further people's republic of china and the string of pearls strategy into the
indian ocean. pakistan is some most important city you have never heard of because the chinese got a post there to listen to ships going in and out of the straight of hormuz and they also have resource relationships with iran and sudan. and as i think you all know, records of those countries and how they tend to make war on their neighbors and also we have the china daily newspaper. its total propagandpropagand a for the peoples of china and i'm wondering, i think the chinese sold the ideas of -- which you might've studied at the naval academy but i'm wondering, in the next few years, with their lower number of ships and sequestration threat over us and the current expansion of chinese power, how would you best manage our military resources around the world? [laughter] >> thank you for the softball
question. [laughter] admiral mullen when he was at her graduation as chief of naval operations come he told us to speak truth to power. as a junior officer, not to follow unethical orders, not to do anything to -- the constitution and keep that in your heart first. the question you're talking about is above our pay grade. [applause] and although they are very important issues sir, i think afterwards we can discuss but for this purpose in this book the vignettes of lead paint in the stories are timeless lessons of leadership. hopefully as we assume those leaders of today we act with integrity and ability the ability for our country. [applause] >> they there, in the blue shirt.
[inaudible] >> i wondered how you came up with that. i write for a living and it's really well organized. [inaudible] >> my name is graham plaster and that hopefully shed some credit on the naval academy english department. i was an english major, and we mobilized a lot of active duty and prior active duty military to do the book, so if there is any literary merit there, you know that does speak well of our program. but we did also bring in a lot of hired help, some friends who were editors.
the organization of the chapters you see weren't what we started out with. we start out with more of a topical organization looking more like the book approach with different leadership aspects and all so different fields of specialization and then over time, we got a lot of entries on one group and not so many on the other and we had to reorganize. we kept on coming back to the editorial drawing boards saying what are the themes here? at the end, we said there is obviously a theme of leadership so that is current throughout all the stories. there's a theme of trying to cast a very positive and hopeful vision for the future of the country in light of the leadership we had in our generation. so, we said, what tells the story the best? we just wanted to tell the story chronologically so we started reporting our experiences of the naval academy, reflections on
things at the naval academy as they blended into combat experience and then we ended up in the book with some of the experiences with their classmates that are gone to the civilian and private-sector. >> alex your son just so people know was also a contributor to the book. he crossed over into the army and is probably serving there. next question? >> i am honored to be here and i have a question that may hit close to the bone, but when the theme is sacrifice, how does it strike these soldiers who are sacrificing so much, to think about how the folks back home
maybe are not sacrificing? is that troublesome? [laughter] >> i was looking for somebody to answer that question. it is difficult. every one of us signed up to serve for a particular reason and purpose. you would like to walk into a his ces or a 7-eleven and see five military veterans buying water and a pack of cigarettes but that is not the reality of this america. what is the reality though is that the folks that have served are very passionate about what they do. the folks that have served would tell everyone that they know to serve. they will make their families proud. they will make everyone that they went to high school and elementary with proud and they will encourage others to serve. the beauty of this all-volunteer
force is that everybody is there. everybody is there for a purpose. everybody is there to accomplish the mission and the folks that our classmate seth was talking about, they get out of uniform and want to continue serving in some capacity. whether that is congress, whether that's local government, whether that is running for school board. we are taught to serve our country and we will continue to do so. so while it does not necessarily make us all happy when you see folks decrying america, when you see folks talking about peace movements the don't exist when the folks in uniforms are the one fighting for peace much more than the folks burning american flags in the streets of course it doesn't make you feel good. but which should make you feel good is the story of the folks in the books and all the veterans that served. [applause]
>> can you tell us if it's going to be available so that we can lead those stories also? >> we had a lot of submissions submissions -- can you hear me? we currently have 63 available, 33 are in the book and 30 are available or will be available soon on the web site and will be published also. i think our target date is the 15th, right at the end of this week to a kindle version and that will be for sale. our objective was to be inclusive with the project and get as many people involved as possible. we had submissions that ran the gamut from not very polished to the very finished but way too
from or your fathers or uncles or grandfather service? >> this will be my last answer because i don't want to monopolize that this is something i'm passionate about. i was equally inspired by my grandfather's in world war ii, when in the one in the pacific and one in italy. they cast a huge shadow, the greatest generation, and then all the veterans and "in the shadow of greatness" for any of us who provides to service academy or join the military, we were doing that because we were inspired to do that. we fell in love with america and it's an early age and we wanted to do something. one of the difficult things is growing up in the '90s, is that we had generation x in the millennials on the horizon. we have this kind of bad five. we had to climb out from under the shadow of greatness.
and so, we at the naval academy aspire to do great things. aspiring to do great things and sustain the greatness of america. and so it gets me a little fired up when you talk about american exceptionalism because i look around at my classmates who wrote this book and achieve these things are going america is exceptional. and my kids are exceptional. i have got four of them here. so, we wanted to write a book that was called the next greatest generation which some people are saying about this generation but we knew we could not say that because we wanted to reproach that theme humbly and say look, we want to be the next greatest generation and we aspire to that. but let's not say that about ourselves. we are in the shadow of greatness, the greatness of our country and the greatness of our veterans and we aspire to cast our own shadow, to inspire our children. and so that is throughout the
introduction and every one has that been. [applause] >> the thank you, elizabeth. this is my neighbor and yesterday, when i was coming out of the capitol hill club, i met josh. he very graciously gave me his calling card and i'm used to getting those from people who are running for office that i support. i must say that i have been deeply touched, and when i looked at the card i asked my youngest grandson's mother, who is my daughter, could he come with me tonight and one of our staff people is here. here is my point. we must not forget, i think that
is urgent for so many aspects of american culture. the best way to do it is to very judiciously and legislatively incorporate into the public school system who received 9% of its budget from the federal government. we have some strings to pull. i'm a christian lobbyist of the capitol. i've been there for 30 years doing this, representing churches and this is a moral matter. it's a matter of destiny and it's very existential in my heart now. thank you josh for giving me your card. there is and there is also the ship. i watch the film and that ship needs to have an ability ended budget that will go not just in new york but down the coast and maybe up as far as delaware to get to philadelphia with what
you call that thing in the front now? a nose? i am not a navy person or engineer. but you need to go up to the west coast and help the folks in l.a. and san francisco and seattle to understand this. that can all be done with someone who has a permanent purpose as a major attraction when the spring break comes in kids come from the eighth grade and will really keep this in their heart. i am going to be certainly talking to you since you are my neighbor. [laughter] about this in terms of this coming fall after the ringling bros. and barnum & bailey circus is over on november the sixth. [laughter] >> the thank you. thank you. i gave you my business card because i know you have some accidental connections with the lord. please pray for the book this
week. we gave guidance to the writers. if you had 10 minutes in front of an eighth-grade class, what would you tell them? what would you tell them about leaderships? what did you experience over the last 10 years and how can we use this book to inspire young people to do great things? all those parents and grandparents out there, this is the book of choice. for the teenager, searching, for that young person looking for direction this will inspire them. thank you for the question. >> we have time for two more. >> the thank you. i met josh as a board of trustees at the naval academy and had dinner with him in march and we discussed participation. he is one of the sponsors and the other seven better here as well toward the book. as he so eloquently said honors those whose names are engraved
in memorial hall. we have sponsors have been on the conference calls and looking beyond just patriot week, and i know you and i will be working for that but could you share with others but the expectation is send where to go on beyond patriot week? >> this week, this launch thanks to the navy memorial and a navy institute press and all of our co-sponsors is watching a weak campaign that will transition to a fall campaign, which will transition into a decade of honor and remembrance of this decade. this is the only book you can find that captures the humble stories and the diverse experiences. it's not one person's dream. is not one person's career. is the most powerful vignette, the most crucible critical moment of the past 10 years on the frontlines. are planned is to move forward on this aggressive book tour to go to universities and high schools in bookstores
throughouthroughou t the country, the west coast, kansas city and texas and all around and share this message. all of you here are now part of the team. all of you here are now on behalf of us, we are asking we are asking you to be advocates for this book. tonight, this week, through our web web site. that is her plan. this book is nonprofit and its ambitious. [applause] >> specifically what josh means is please go home, like our facebook page and send it on to all of your friends. one more question. >> i am steve smith, navy 79. we just graduated as a last the last class of the new academy. i am proud of not only my daughter but all the people who followed and her footsteps of the naval academy.
[applause] where did the matt freeman foundation go when we got out of -- [inaudible] >> we have an educational theme and at this point it's in any war-torn country. we have people that have started in djibouti and some of the areas over there and we hope to be able to get into other countries as we expand. we really just started a few years ago and the requests are starting to come in more from individuals. we also have large shipments at go to our humanitarian warehouses over there. each one of them is packed with information about matthew and the project and where it came from. i have wonderful pictures of principals in the schools over there holding mattheus pictures saying, someday we would like to meet this woman because we would like to thank her for the tools for our children.
so most of it has been local. it started our biggest launch and went into gulfport high school where she was stationed, my daughter-in-law and she said my husband and i have been president and vice president of our student council and we would like to do this. she called me a few weeks later and said i have got boxes all over my condo. they had about two tons of school supplies they had collected in two weeks. we have to figure out now what to do with them. we have a new opportunity where you can come to us, go to my page the matthew freeman project and sign up for volunteers to weaken gets launchers immediately. we have to put them in one large flat rate box so there's opportunity that way. you can work with spirit of america which is a marine-based organization and they will come and pick up large shipments and
get them to the humanitarian warehouse. if in fact we get to a point that we don't need god, that is why we are branching out into the scholarship areas and trying to help in the educational fields within the fallen community. [applause] >> lee so thank you so much for your comments and specifically as we discussed this week one of the things we want to make sure we left you with, we we are all here to remember and take a moment and pause. but we are also moving forward with this book. it's a book about how we can take this leadership and the new lessons we have learned and impact our nation in wonderful ways in the future. what we would love you to do was join us outside for signing time and thank you so much for all of your questions. we could not have done this without all